Knee Pain - Pes Anserine Bursitis a Common Cause of Medial Knee Pain
Knee Pain - Pes Anserinus Bursitis a Common Cause of Medial Knee Pain
Pes anserine bursitis is a common, but frequently under diagnosed, cause
of medial knee pain. Causing pain, and sometimes swelling on the area
at the top of the shin bone on the inside of the knee, frequent cutting
and pivoting movements such as those used when playing basketball,
football and rugby can make an individual more likely to develop pes
anserine bursitis. Medial knee pain (pain on the inside of the knee) can
come from a number of causes including ligament sprain, cartilage
injury and osteoarthritis. However a frequently under-diagnosed cause of
medial knee pain is pes anserine bursitis.
Knee Pain Info: What is the Pes Anserine Bursa?
A bursa is a fluid filled sac whose purpose is to reduce friction
between two adjoining structures. The pes anserine bursa sits in between
the tendons of three muscles (sartorius, gracilis and semi tendinosis)
and the broad ligament that runs across the inside of the knee joint
(the medial collateral ligament) The pes anserine bursa is at the top of
the shin bone, just below the knee joint on the inside of the shin.
Bursitis simply means inflammation of the bursa hence pes anserine
bursitis means that the pes anserine bursa is inflamed.
Knee Pain Info: What are the Symptoms of Pes Anserine Bursitis?
Medial knee pain; pain on the inside of the knee/ upper shin just below the knee joint
No one causative factor. Pes anserine bursitis is not caused by
an injury or incident, the pain does not come on suddenly, but builds up
The area over the lower, inside part of the knee may be tender to touch.
The area over the lower inside area of the knee may appear swollen.
The pes anserine bursa is not inside the knee joint so pes anserine bursitis does not cause the knee to lock, or to give way.
Knee Pain Info: What Causes Pes Anserine Bursitis?
The bursa lies under three tendons: gracilis and sartorius pull the leg
across towards the other leg. Semitendinosis is one of the hamstrings so
is responsible for bending the knee. Any movement that repeatedly uses
these three tendons can cause bursitis by increasing the pressure on the
bursa. Sports that use these movements frequently, and therefore are
most likely to irritate the bursa, include golf, running, dancing and
There are several factors that make it more likely that an individual will get pes anserine bursitis:
Underlying osteoarthritis of the knee
Injury to the large ligament on the inside of the knee, (the medial collateral ligament).
Knee Pain Info: What is the Treatment for Pes Anserine Bursitis Causing Medial Knee Pain?
RICE: Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation, to reduce the pain and swelling.
Anti Inflammatory medication may be prescribed.
Selective stretching and strengthening exercises
Correction of lower limb biomechanics. Altered foot position may
be an underlying cause of pes anserine bursitis. Core stability
exercises can also be useful.
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